Bhavani -

Bhavani - "The rhythm of the machine relaxes me; it gives me a sense of freedom"

Bhavani and 250 other women in Sri Lanka are being trained in handlooming, equipped with business skills and linked to sustainable markets

Bhavani is a single mother of five from Tharmapuram in northern Sri Lanka, working at a handloom centre, weaving towels and bed sheets. Through the Global Program for Strengthening Women she is being provided with technical and design skills in handloom weaving, as well as in managing a business and effective marketing.“When I work at the loom I forget my troubles. The rhythm of the machine relaxes me. It frees me from the reality of day-to-day life. It gives me a sense of freedom,” says Bhavani

The program will encourage women to run their business in groups, each comprising about 15 women. Bhavani believes that working with other women will provide the support and solutions she needs: “We will help each other and improve our knowledge. We will improve our business and make a better income. I am becoming more confident of my work and of myself. I want to be self-reliant. I see handloom weaving as a way out of poverty.”

Bhavani can also see positive effects in the younger generation, including her own children: “Girls are doing things they didn’t do before. And they know what they want to do. Of my three daughters, the eldest wants to become teacher, and of the twins – one of them wants to be the village head and the other an electrician.”

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